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Could your religion be a deterrent to a job offer?

Could your religion hurt your job search?
Could your religion hurt your job search?

Can putting your religion on your resume cause you to not get a job offer? It might, according to a new study.

The study, posted in Social Currents deals with "Religious Affiliation and Hiring Discrimination in the American South." According to The Washington Post the study "found job applicants whose resumé betrayed a religious affiliation were 26 percent less likely to be contacted by an employer — except for Jewish applicants."

Researchers from the University of Connecticut sent 3,200 applications to 800 jobs in a 150 mile radius around two major Southern cities. The applications were fabricated. The distinction on the resumes was religious affiliation. The control group showed no religious affiliation and were the preferred choices in most cases.

The researchers said “Only Jews escaped totally statistically significant evidence of discrimination against this group across all eight indicators in the study.”

The study appears to show that people prefer those who are similar in culture. The American South is the nation's most religious region and is predominantly Christian. The study showed that the least likely to be selected were those who were atheist, Muslim or pagan.

So, based on this, how should Christians, or people of any faith, act in the workplace? Is it too much to talk about where you go to church? Put a scripture verse on your screensaver?

Jesus prayed in the garden:

My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. Sanctify them by[d] the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world.
John 17:15-18

Believers in Christ are in the world, but set apart from it, through Him. It's a tough concept. And one that Christians must prayerfully consider as they seek that next job.

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